Winter Injury

Well we were plodding along with a fairly easy Winter so far. We have had some snow but it seemed to melt quickly. We have been open and on the greens most of the season as well since very little frost built up in the ground. Once the snow melted we were good to go. We had a severe cold snap back on Valentines Day weekend but had snow cover so I thought we would be protected. The snow melted and we once again cleaned off the greens and opened up. By all accounts it then took a few more days for these symptoms to appear. If it is direct cold temperature injury was it just a perfect storm of warm weather and a severe cold snap? The plants have certainly been acting funny with a flowering dandelion spotted on 5 earlier.The damage is on 3,4,8 and 9. Very little on 6 and 7 fairways. To be clear I do not know what this is and have never seen anything like it, ever. My first reaction seeing this up close was it reminded me of a slide I have seen in seminars of cold temperature injury to Bermuda grass. I have a couple samples in my office incubating to see if they are alive. I will also send out a couple samples to a lab and see what they say.

Winter injury on Bermuda from Internet

3 fairway

3 fairway

4 rough

6 fairway/rough

8 fairway

8 green, collar, and rough

9 fairway

8 green under microscope - leaf damage

Weather Data from our station
Aside form the odd looking patterns that resemble the picture taken from the Internet why are the x-country ski tracks still green? The pressure compacted the snow and it insulated the grass more? Hopefully I will have answers for you in the next post. Hopefully the damage is just to the leaf tissue and not the crowns of the plant. So much for an easy Winter.

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